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Aquatic Ecosystems Study Guide


VOCABULARY
1. Salinity: The saltiness or dissolved salt content of a body of water or in soil. 2. Plankton: Any organisms that live in the water column and are incapable of swimming against a current. Provide crucial source of food to many large aquatic organisms, such as fish and whales. 3. Nekton: Refers to aggregate of actively swimming aquatic organisms in body of water able to move independently of water currents. 4. Benthos: Community of organisms which live on, in, or near the seabed, also known as the benthic zone. 5. Littoral Zone: Part of a sea, lake or river that is close to the shore. 6. Benthic Zone: Ecological region at the lowest level of a body of water such as an ocean or a lake, including the sediment surface and some sub surface layers. 7. Eutrophication: Ecosystem response to the addition of artificial or natural substances, such as nitrates and phosphates, through fertilizers or sewage, to an aquatic system. 8. River Source/Course: Term upriver refers to the direction leading to the source of the river, which is against the direction of flow. Likewise, term downriver describes the direction towards the mouth of the river, in which the current flows. 10. River Mouth: Or stream mouth, is a part of a stream where it flows into another stream, river, lake, reservoir, sea, or ocean. 11. Marsh: Type of wetland that is dominated by herbaceous rather than woody plant species. 12. Swamp: Wetland that is forested.

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13. Bog: Wetland that accumulates peat, a deposit of dead plant material. 14. Lagoon: Shallow body of water separated from a larger bod of water by barrier islands or reefs. 15. Estuary: Form a transition zone between river environments and ocean environments and are subject to both marine influences, such as tides, waves, and the influx of saline water; and riverine influences, such as flows of fresh water and sediment. 16. Abundance: An extremely plentiful or over sufficient quantity or supply. 17. Diversity: Condition of having or being composed of differing elements. 18. Watershed: Carries water shed from the land after rain falls and snow melts. 19. Hydrophytes: Aquatic plants that have adapted to living in aquatic environments. These plants require special adaptations for living submerged in water or at the water's surface. 20. Halophytes: A plant that grows in waters of high salinity, coming into contact with saline water through its roots or by salt spray, such as in saline semi deserts, mangrove swamps, marshes and sloughs, and seashores.

CRITICAL THINKING 1. What are the three important benefits (ecosystem service) provided by wetlands? -The three important benefits provided by the wetlands is that the wetlands limit the damaging effects of waves, convey and store floodwaters, and trap sediment and reduce pollution. 2. What causes high and low tides? Explain. -The sun and the moon cause high and low tides. They're caused by the combined effects of

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the gravitational forces exerted by them. 3. Where would you find an estuary? What type of organisms would you expect to find there? -You would find an estuary in the coastal area where freshwater from rivers and streams mixes with saltwater from the ocean. Types of organisms you will would expect to find there are crabs and sea turtles. 4. What is the definition of freshwater? The mouth of a river can sometimes become murky because of all of the sediments that are washed all go in the water, which makes the water all murky because it's filled with sediment. 5. The mouth of a river can sometimes become murky because of all of the sediments that are washed downstream. Name 3 problems are caused by murkiness? -Cloudy Ponds. -Over load with algae. -Photosynthesis disturbance. 6. Name 2 types of fish that can live in low oxygen environments: 1: Carp Fish 2: Cat fish 7. Explain why reefs are so important to preserve. What are some of the dangers to coral reefs? Name 2. Reefs are so important to preserve because they provide us with a lot of oxygen CO2. Dangers of the coral reef is the extinction of 1/3 of our fish because of CO2. 1: Eutrophication 2: Over amount of CO2 and low level of dissolved Oxygen.

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8. There are different types of marine reef environments. define the following: a. Fringing Reefs: A coral reef that lies close to the shore. b. Barrier Reefs: A coral reef running parallel to the shore but separated from it by a channel of deep water. c. Atolls: A ring-shaped reef, island, or chain of islands formed of coral. d. Coral Reefs: A reef consisting of coral consolidated into limestone. 9. Draw a diagram of a marine environment and define the following: a. Intertidal: Denoting the area of a seashore that is covered at high tide and uncovered a low tide. b. Pelagic: Pelagic is relating to the open sea. c. Abyssal: Relating to or denoting the depths or bed of the ocean, esp. between about 10,000 and 20,000 feet (3,000 and 6,000 m) down. d. Benthic: The relating to or happening on the bottom under a body of water 10. What is winterkill in a lake? What happens? -Winter kill in lakes occurs when fish suffocated from lack of dissolved oxygen. Winterkill is the most common type of fish kill. 11. Describe the differences in the types of food webs found in the two ocean light zones, euphotic and aphotic. Where does the initial energy input for each come from? The difference between euphotic and aphotic is that euphotic is the upper layer of water that receives light and thus photosynthesis is possible. Aphotic is the portion of ocean that is not exposed to sunlight , and extends from - 0,9 4.6 km. The energy input comes from the sun. 12. Explain how lakes turn over yearly and what this process causes. Name one positive and one negative aspect of turn over.

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-Lake turnover is the process of a lake's water turning over from top to bottom. As the water cools, it becomes more dense, causing it to sink. 13. Draw a diagram of a lake and define the following: a. Littoral Zone: Littoral zone is the region of the shore of a lake or sea or ocean. b. Limnetic Zone: The limnetic zone is the well-lit, open surface waters in a lake, away from the shore. The vegetation of the littoral zone surrounds this expanse of open water and it is above the profundal zone. c. Profundal Zone: The profundal zone is a deep zone of an inland body of freestanding water, such as a lake or pond, located below the range of effective light penetration. 14. Complete this summary table of aquatic ecosystems:

Location Coral Reef Sandy Beach Mangrove Swamp Salt Marsh Mudflat Rocky Shore Tropical Oceans near equator South Shore Tropical & Subtropical areas Ocean Coastlines Coast Shores

Physical Characteristics Corals, plants, fishes Sandy, sea-weed, salty Swamp, trees, plants Plants, grass, bugs Mud, bugs, plants Rocky, rocks, sealife